I have an idea for outdoor security lighting. I'd like to mount a number of
regular incandescent lights to illuminate the place like a prison yard under
certain circumstances. I want a normal wall switch someplace, probably near
one of the doors. But, I'd also like to be able to kick the lights on by
remote control from the bedside. Based on the plan I have in mind, the
system would need to handle about 3000 watts worth of bulbs. Can't seem to
locate the hardware needed to do this. Anyone know of a source?
The problem with using an x-10 motion sensor is that after a preset time, any
sensor that has "expired" sends the OFF signal, and all of the outdoor
floodlights would turn off, even if you sent the on command yourself, rather
I would use standard motion sensors and wire them up on a 3-wire system, with
the 3rd switchleg connected common to every motion sensor's output and every
bulb. Then you can connect up to 300 watts (or more depending on the brand of
sensors) of compact flourescent floodlight bulbs. (About 12-15 CFL'S with the
equivalant output of 10 150 watt incandescent floodlights)
A 2-wire cable between the black & red could act as a instant-on "bypass" to
activate the lights whenever needed and keep them on.
Then simply mounting 1 halogen (3-500 watts) per standard wall switch module
anywhere convenient will afford local control of each light.
Then a couple of hardwired controllers in ideal places (bedside, near door)
with 1 rocker switch.
All modules set to same address.
Umm....no. It's called smart. I was awakened two weeks back by running
footsteps outside the bedroom at 3:00 AM. The running stopped, a brief
conversation took place, followed by more running. Five minutes later,
someone's alarm siren began sounding.
My logic: I really dislike paperwork. I'd rather have someone leave than
come in the house. If I need to introduce them to Jeeeeeeezus, I suspect the
paperwork will be outrageous.
Many homes have some sort of useless lights outside, but burglars still do a
brisk business. The reasons are obvious: The lights don't illuminate
anything helpful. Matter of fact, they usually blind the homeowner and the
cops (when they arrive). And, they come on every night at the same time,
which, to anyone observant, does not indicate any sort of consciousness
controlling things. On the other hand, if lights come on when an intruder
arrives, it may or may not be due to a motion sensor. If an intruder is
willing to accept 50/50 odds of finding someone home, then an important
piece of information has just been given to the homeowner.
Most burglaries occur during the daytime, not at night. The reason is
simple - most homes are empty during the day, and occupied at night.
Given the choice, most burglars would rather not have to confront a
Look at it this way: Depending on whose stats you believe regarding gun
ownership in this area, it's possible that 40% of homes have a gun inside,
ready to use. Now, if someone enters your house knowing those odds, I choose
to call them insane, as opposed to rational and reasonable. I don't see this
as fear. I see it as acceptance of reality. If someone's willing to accept
those odds in return for a VCR and some jewelry, they are asking to be
ended. The only polite thing to do is to grant them their wish.
lets get to the meat of the issue.
why do you feel so strongly that you would KILL someone over your VCR? you
dont see the problem? trust me dude, you have a problem. you're actually
hoping it happens.
Actually, no. I have no interest in killing an intruder, as long as he is
100% obedient when we meet. Only a psychopath looks forward to killing. But,
let's turn the question around:
You're home with your family. It's 3:00 AM. You wake up with a parched
throat from the heat and walk into the kitchen for a drink of water. There,
you find some nut with a flashlight. Assuming you are sure you have a way to
deal with him in varying levels of intensity, please describe your next
first, i bet you have a better chance of winning the lottery twice than you
have of being in the situation you describe.
second, i suspect a loud yell would solve things 98% of the time. if kids
are robbing you they will run. another 1% you cant solve no matter what you
do. if a true psychopath came in to kill you, you're dead. this leaves
about 1% middle ground where your weapon may do some good.
stop watching tv. ignore those stupid brinks commercials designed to scare
the hell out of you. the person robbing you is someone you already know.
your guns wont save you from them.
how many people each year actually deter a robbery in their house because
they have a gun? three maybe... your time is better spent making sure you
look both ways when you cross the street. just put the guns away man. stop
with the overkill approach to your yard lighting. cancel your cable tv.
get with reality.
Actually, Randy, I watch little or no TV. And contrary to the dream world
you live in, home invasions aren't as uncommon as you suggest, and intruders
are dissuaded by a gun more often than you've chosen to believe.
Now, if you can't offer any technical suggestions for the issue at hand, go
sit in the corner and drink your chocolate milk. And, learn to use the Shift
key where appropriate.
Actually, home invasions ARE extremely uncommon, in pretty much all
cities and towns in North America. The ratio of regular break-ins (in
unoccupied homes) to home invasions (where the intruder knows the home is
unoccupied) is something in the range of 10,000 to one.
You can guess at whether intruders are dissuaded by guns all you like,
but the reality is that we have no way of knowing whether gun ownership
dissuades break-ins. As I noted previously, most burglars will only
attempt to break in if they know the home is empty. Whether a gun is in
the home or not, it's not a deterrent if the home is unoccupied.
As to the security lighting, there's nothing wrong with regular, plain
motion sensor lights. The idea isn't to convince the potential intruder
that there's a person home - it's to make it easy for neighbours and
anybody else nearby to see the burglar. If somebody's going to break
into a home, they're going to do it where they're least likely to be
I'd also suggest getting to know your neighbours. Having watchful
neighbours is an extremely effective way to deter break-ins, especially
if they will challenge people who aren't normally around the
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